Guide to Kuirau Park

Your Best Guide for a Trip to Kuirau Park

Pictures on social media make Kuirau Park look idyllic. You’ve got people knee-deep in steaming pools with serene smiles plastered on their faces. Easy enough, I thought, when I went to visit the place myself.

I’m not what you’d call coordinated, true, but balancing on one leg while lowering myself gracefully into a warm footbath seemed achievable. Seemed.

So, when my foot met water as hot as what I’d used to cook my last crab dinner, I ended up launching myself backwards with all the elegance of a flailing hippo. Let’s just say the thermal mud mask I received free of charge wasn’t part of the plan.

Needless to say, my dreams of foot-based nirvana were dashed that time. But hey, since then, I’ve learned all of the do’s and don’ts – the tricks to having that Instagram-picture-perfect relaxing time at Kuirau Park. 

And of course, I’ll share all of them with you today!

Things to Know about Kuirau Park

Location: 1371, Pukuatua Street, Ranolf Street, Rotorua 3010, New Zealand

Directions: Google Maps

Contact: +6473484199

Admission: Free

Parking: Free parking off Pukuatua and Ranolf streets

Best Time to Go to Kuirau Park

The best time to go to Kuirau Park is from September to November because it’s not crowded with tourists and the weather is perfect for that soothing soak.

But the park itself is open 24/7 year-round, so you can technically visit anytime you want!

What to Do at Kuirau Park

Explore its geothermal wonders

You’ll find bubbling mud pools, steaming vents, and colourful hot springs all along the walking tracks. The park is relatively small, so you can see everything in an hour or two.

And the park is home to Kuirau Lake, a crater lake that’s constantly heated by geothermal activity. The water can be a bit cloudy and smelly, but it’s still an interesting sight.

Get a free foot soak at the foot pools 

I probably made it clear already earlier, but if there’s anything that you have to do when coming to Kuirau Park, it’s indulge in the foot pools. 

You can choose from any three of the three-foot pools all around the park, and you won’t have to pay a single cent for the spa experience. The water is usually toasty warm, so make sure you test it out before dipping your feet in all the way.

Pack a picnic and enjoy it at the park 

There’s no shortage of perfect picnic spots. You’ll find plenty of picnic tables scattered around, some even with barbeque grills. 

But if you’re planning on using the BBQs, make sure to bring your own matches or lighter fluid.

Let the kids go wild on the playground

The kids will have a blast on the plazas here. They can make use of the swings and go down the slides, and even the young at heart can have a little fun on the playground.

Extra Tips to Keep in Mind When Visiting Kuirau Park

  • Brace yourself for the smell. Rotorua is famous for its geothermal activity, and that means some funky odors. Kuirau Park is no exception.
  • Free foot soak! The free foot baths are a great way to relax and warm your toes. Just be careful—the water can get quite hot (40℃ to 50℃)! 
  • Watch your step! The ground itself can get hot around the geothermal features, so stick to the marked paths and boardwalks.